Australian Olympic Committee Explains Decisions Involving Dressage Team Combination Sue Hearn & Remmington

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Sue Hearn riding Remmington on the Australian team in the Olympic dressage Grand Prix. Australia did not qualify for the Grand Prix Special that is the second phase of team competition. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Sue Hearn riding Remmington on the Australian team in the Olympic dressage Grand Prix. Australia did not qualify for the Grand Prix Special that is the second phase of team competition. © 2016 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

RIO DE JANEIRO, Aug. 11, 2016–The Australian Olympic Committee reported Thursday that it became aware Sue Hearn’s dressage horse Remmington had received an administrative sanction for a controlled medication only after the team was already in Rio de Janeiro in final preparations for the Games.

“There was no traveling reserve with dressage and it was not logistically possible to make a substitute” with the dressage horse inspection scheduled for for five days later, the AOC explained.

The AOC issued its statement in Rio after dressage-news.com reported the administrative sanction issued by the International Equestrian Federation (FEI) for not declaring use of the anti inflammatory Meloxicam, an official Controlled Medication, at the CDI3* in Rotterdam, Netherlands June 22-26.

The AOC said that Equestrian Australia nominated Sue Hearn in good faith to the AOC who subsequently selected Sue to the Australian Olympic Team. Sport entries were complete, the nomination and selection period was no longer current and therefore relevant.

“Sue accepted the administrative sanction immediately and was cleared by the Federation Equestre Internationale to compete,” it said in a statement. “Given the circumstances the AOC felt Sue should retain her place in the team.

“At the time of nomination, Sue met all selection and nomination critera as per the dressage policy.”

Equestrian Australia later replied to a question from dressage-news.com whether Sue had signed documents about medications during veterinary inspections conducted on behalf of the federation of all the horses after Rotterdam that was the second of two European selection events. The U.S.-based Kelly Layne withdrew Udon P after Rotterdam that made a place on the team available to Sue and Remmington.

“At the time of nomination Sue met all selection and nomination critera as per the dressage policy,” a federation spokesperson said.